Thursday, February 21, 2008

Curriculum Day With Alan November

Alan November was here to address our faculty and parents on Tuesday, and lead small workshops with various groups yesterday. For the edtech set, it was confirmation of the power of connective learning. What was interesting to me was the discussion of how to get more people engaged in web communication and collaboration technologies, especially in a K-12 school with a democratic leadership structure, 4000 students, and a high school faculty of 150+. Essentially, he laid out six things that should be happening in classrooms:

1. There should be a curriculum review team made up of four students, assigned jobs like: writer, mixer, editor. They produce a podcast each week reviewing the lessons and content.

2. There should be a tutorial design team that creates screencasts for further review. Alan suggested using Jing for screencasting. (I used to use screencast-o-matic, but Jing can do more, and screencasts are easy to embed in a Moodle page or blog or anything else.)

3. Student questions should not be answered by the teacher. Instead students should be charged with finding the answers and using social bookmarking tools to organize resources. In addition, students teachers and students should become expert web researchers and create their own custom search engines for class topics and questions.

4. Three to four students should be official scribes for the class, collaborating to write and share notes in Google Docs.

5. Each class should have a global communications team, leveraging tools like: ePals, Skype, Technorati.

6. Students should manage RSS feeds relevant to curriculum and communications.


PDonaghy said...

Hi Christopher
I would love to see those things happening in my college. Unfortunately, I think we are light years away from it happening yet!
PS: you might be interested in adding your blog information to the International Edubloggers Directory

C. Watson said...

Thanks for the comment. I'll add my blog to the directory.
Alan November's list is definitely the ideal. I'd estimate that any of the six learning opportunities are available in a few classrooms (and we're a school of 4000 students). Maybe some students/instructors in your college would be interested in a collaboration of this sort, sharing bookmarked resources, screencasting or something like that?